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ThirdShift wins Silver at Campaign of the Year Awards for second consecutive year

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Independent, Young & Trailblazing

ThirdShift, the Independent Media Agency of SHIFT, has done it once again, by winning the Silver award for Media Agency of the Year for the ‘Rest of South Asia’ category, at the recently concluded Campaign – Agency of the Year Awards for the second consecutive year.

It is important to note that this win is undoubtedly a remarkable feat for the ThirdShift team who worked tirelessly towards navigating through an extremely unpredictable year.

Bearing in mind that the Media Agency ventured into the competitive media landscape in Sri Lanka only a mere three years ago, being the recipient of such a distinguished title within a short span of time is truly a tremendous achievement, and one that warrants due recognition and high praise. While acknowledging this award, the CEO of ThirdShift, Prasanga Jayatunga delved into the success story of his agency and the reasons for its steady upward trajectory.

“We stepped into the media business landscape back in 2017. By that time, I had done my stint in the international media agency business and had been Leader, Mindshare & CEO of Media Factory. I was enriched by those experiences, and the idea of venturing out on my own had crossed my mind, specifically because I believed that I could tailor-make solutions and work with clients on Hand-Crafted Media Solutions”, he said.

“At the time this was just an idea. But, before long the opportunity came my way and I stepped out with the belief that the market needed an agency that would look beyond mere scheduling and planning. Looking back, I realised that it was a vacuum that existed, and I stepped in to fill it. But then, what I really wanted to focus on was to give my clients ROI beyond just reach and frequency. Perhaps the yearning to be creative within the Media business is what drove me to agree with the Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of Shift, Chrishani Kotalawela and Sujeewa Samarasekera, when they invited me to join them and start ThirdShift”, he noted.

“Sujeewa & Chrishy were veterans of the industry but had never handled media, however, I took the opportunity that was given to me and went ahead with it. I didn’t think it all through. I decided and gave my word and it has been a rocking ride. It’s been a lot of hard work, sweat, tears and sleepless nights. But awards like this really reminded me that as a team, we have done justice to our Clients and Client Brands; the real reason behind this company’s success”, he added.

ThirdShift also bagged two Golds, one Silver and finalist awards at the coveted Effie Awards in 2019. While this achievement at the Effie’s is of great significance in itself, it must also be recognized that ThirdShift received one of this Silver award in the capacity of a Primary Agency considering that it is usually a Creative Agency that takes home such an award in addition to most Media Agencies being classified as Secondary Agencies.



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CEBEU guns for ex-Chairman Ferdinando

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by Ifham Nizam

The Ceylon Electricity Board Engineers Union (CEBEU) Friday  said that they are in the process of collecting evidence against former Ceylon Electricity Board Chairman M.M.C. Ferdinando over the recent statement he made on a proposed power project with India.

A senior engineer said that there is a high possibility that the seasoned civil servant dragged President Gotabaya Rajapaksa to disrepute because he didn’t see eye to eye with the President.

Eng. Isuru Kasthuriratne, a committee member of the CEBEU and Project Engineer – Mannar Wind Power Project of the Board said they would never allow former chairman to get away easily.

“There are always controversies about him. We would not let this case go. We are in touch with all bodies,” he said.

Kasthuriratne said that very relevant documents were authored and authorized by the former chairman and “he cannot simply say he is not aware of this and that.”

Ferdinando on June 11, tendered his resignation following the controversy he sparked over the planned 500 MW unsolicited wind power project here by India’s Adani group.

“The Adani group at first proposed to sell power to the CEB at 6.50 US cents per unit,” CEBEU President Anil Ranjith told journalists recently.

Despite numerous attempts, the former CEB chairman was not available for comment.

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Dilshan Wirasekara, new CSE Chairman

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The Colombo Stock Exchange (CSE) announced the appointment of Dilshan Wirasekara as the Chairman of the Board of Directors of the CSE with effect from Friday (24).

Wirasekara has served on the Board of the CSE since 21st November 2017 and succeeds Dumith Fernando, who steps down as the Chairman after completing his two-year tenure.

Wirasekara is the Director/Chief Executive Officer of one of the leading investment banking firms, First Capital Holdings PLC, offering a diverse range of financial services in Government Securities, Corporate Finance and Advisory, Asset Management and Stock Brokering, which he has been part of since 2013.

He currently is the chairman of the Investment Subcommittee of the CSE and also serves on the Risk and Audit Committee of the CSE as well as the CSE/SEC joint committees on Digitalization and the Central Counter Party System (CCP).

An Investment banker by profession with a career spanning over 26 years, comprising diversified expertise in financial services, including banking, treasury and investment management, capital market strategy, and corporate finance advisory services.

Wirasekara specializes in Asset and Liability Risk Management, having secured the accolade of leading and representing two Sri Lankan companies in winning the International Bank Asset and Liability competition organized annually by the Netherlands Development Finance Company (FMO), German Investment Corporation (DEG), and Proparco – a subsidiary of the Agence Française de Development (AFD).

Wirasekara is an alumnus of INSEAD, having completed his Executive Professional Education at INSEAD Business School in Fontainebleau, France. He is also an alumnus of AOTS, Tokyo, Japan.

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NCE on Govt’s focus on directing public servants to private sector employment

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National Chamber of Exporters has given the a proposal to the Prime Minister and copied it to the Ministry of Public Administration, Home Affairs, Provincial Councils and Local Government on providing employment opportunities to government servants in the private sector companies for a specified period.

The Chamber said in a release: Through Media sources we got to know that The Ministry of Public Administration has appointed a committee to look into the possibility of granting five years of leave to government employees to work in the private sector.

Its states that a seven-member committee has been appointed for this purpose and that the said committee is to submit its report to the Cabinet of Ministers within two weeks.

Sri Lankan exporters are proposing to absorb public sector employees for employment in the sector to relieve the burden of wages and related costs on the Government.

The Export Sector has been able to sustain business and has also reached the pre pandemic level of an average of USD.01 billion export revenue during the period January to April 2022. Before the dawn of the pandemic, exporters were facing difficulties with lack of skilled workers. However, during the pandemic, many exporters were compelled to downsize operations and lay off employees which has created a vacuum in crucial areas of operations.

In current scenario, considering the financial burden and the reportedly excessive workforce attached to the public sector, NCE member exporters are proposing following options in reaching a win-win agreement for both government and the export sector. It is to be noted that labour requirements of exporters vary according to the relevant industry, yet in general all categories could be considered.

1. Any government employee in the permanent carder is eligible to apply for employment in the export sector, excluding from following institutions as they are involved in law enforcement in the country which may lead to conflict of interests.

a) Department of Police

b) Department of Inland Revenue

c) Department of Customs

d) Department of Excise

 2.Government to grant unpaid leave up to a maximum of 59 months.

 3.Employer will offer a “Temporary Labour Contract “to such selected individuals which include: –

 a) Period of contract for 59 months (because on completion of the 60th month, the employee will be eligible for Gratuity.)

b) Their employment will be in accordance with the laws and statutes under which the respective private sector company’s  employees of similar cadre is employed.

c) Leave entitlement as per employer’s policy on leave

d) Employment contract can be terminated with either party giving 30 days’ written notice.

e) In case of maternity leave, a number of stipulated days will be available as unpaid leave.

f)  At the end of 59 months, the government to absorb such individuals back to the public sector employment as per pertinent rules and regulations.

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